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Children and Families Act 2014 and The SEN Code of Practice (England)

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Presentation on theme: "Children and Families Act 2014 and The SEN Code of Practice (England)"— Presentation transcript:

1 Children and Families Act 2014 and The SEN Code of Practice (England)
Jeremy Watt Deputy Head of CEAS

2 Children and Families Act 2014
Adoption and virtual school head; Family justice system; Special educational needs (including SEN Code); Child care; Office of the Children’s Commissioner; Share parental leave and flexible working.

3 Special Educational Needs
Provisions based on: ‘Support and aspiration: a new approach to special educational needs and disability’ March 2011: Green Paper published for consultation September 2011: 20 pilot projects launched to test proposed reforms May 2012: Report entitled ‘Support and aspiration: a new approach to special educational needs and disability – progress and next steps’

4 SEN: Main Provisions Introduction of a single assessment process for education, health and care. Greater emphasis on parental inclusion in the assessment process (disappearance of School Action and School Action Plus); Change from Statements to Education, Health and Care plans; EHCPs cover the 0-25 age range; Joint commissioning between education, health and social care and better communication between institutions and services; Initiation of pilot projects in 31 local authorities; Personal budgets for parents and young people with SEN;

5 SEN: Main Provisions (cont.)
The inclusion of all state-funded schools (maintained, free, academies) and colleges in the SEN support system; Funding for degree-level specialist training for talented support staff working with children with SEN; Similar rights and protections for young people with SEN in FE and training, as for those children with SEN under 16; Supported internships to help young people with SEN learn the skills they need for the workplace.

6 Key Findings (January 2014) from the five pathfinder areas
Pilot Projects Key Findings (January 2014) from the five pathfinder areas Areas appear to be retaining their previous approaches to eligibility. So those who were eligible for a SEN Statement are expected to be eligible for an EHC plan The largest change in eligibility is around olds. As covered in the legislation, young people in this age band may now be eligible for support The five pathfinder areas that contributed to the report had developed similar EHC planning pathways which included common elements and sequencing. The pathways included five stages: referral; considering if an assessment is required; co-ordinated assessment; planning; and sign off

7 Pilot Projects (cont.) There are differing approaches to some key elements in the pathway in terms of: the amount of information that is gathered at the referral stage; the extent of choice a family has over who will be their EHC plan co-ordinator; whether the plan is written by a multi-disciplinary team established on a case-by-case basis (the Team Around the Child [TAC] approach) or drafted by the co-ordinator based on the assessment; how plans are signed-off and approved; and the step down process used for children and young people that were not felt to require an EHC plan, which in some cases meant using the EHC planning template on a non-statutory basis as a means of extending the new way of working to all families;

8 Pilot Projects (cont.) The EHC planning pathway is different to the SEN Statementing process. There are three main points of difference: there is more emphasis on gathering information from across services at the point of referral; the family is much more involved through the co-ordinated assessment and planning stages; and it produces a plan which is more outcome focussed and family centred, having involved the family much more; There remain a number of challenges in implementing the EHC planning pathway. Overcoming these challenges will be important to delivering the change envisaged, and pathfinders are identifying possible solutions. They focus around proper co-ordination/co-operation between agencies, and ensure that the EHC plan co-ordinator has sufficient time to deliver a meaningful plan for each family;

9 Pilot Projects (cont.) The new family-centred way of working can lead to better quality plans as it enables the professionals to develop a more comprehensive understanding of the child or young person. ‘Special Educational Needs and Disability Pathfinder Programme Evaluation. Thematic Report: The Education, Health and Care (EHC) Planning Pathway for families that are new to the SEN system’ Full report available at: (click in Children’s Services Professionals – SEN and disability)

10 Children of Service Personnel
Consultation with MoD at drafting stage under the auspices of the Armed Forces’ Covenant; Section on ‘Children of Service Personnel’; Highlights implications of Service-induced mobility and deployments for Service children with SEN and their families; Provides good practice guidance for schools, local authorities and the SEN and Disability Tribunal; Signposts to CEAS and confirms continuation of statutory assessment role.

11 Child Care Local authorities in England are required
To provide sufficient free early education places (570 hours a year over no fewer than 38 weeks a year) to all children living in their areas from the beginning of the term after their third birthdays; To promote equality and inclusion, particularly for disadvantaged families, looked after children, children in need and children with disabilities or special educational needs by removing barriers of access to free early education

12 Child Care (Cont) From September 2014, the Government intends to increase the proportion of two year olds who will be eligible, so that around 40% of two year olds in England can access an early learning place; From September 2014, a two year old will be eligible for 570 hours of early education if they meet anyone of the following criteria: They meet the criteria used for free school meals Their families receive Working Tax Credits and have annual gross earnings of no more than £16190 Their families receive Universal Credit and have annual gross earnings of no more than £16190

13 Child Care (Cont) They have a current Statement of SEN / an Education and Health Care Plan They attract Disability Living Allowance ; or They have left care through special guardianship or an adoption or residence order

14 Any comments or questions?

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